My topic of discussion this week is procrastination. In my last post, I discussed the ramifications of waiting too long to file bankruptcy. The same advice goes for anything to do with your finances. Even though there’s a little procrastinator in all of us, there’s a difference between putting off doing the laundry or washing the car and putting off paying your bills on time. While its understandable that you would want to put off something you don’t want to do, procrastinating with your finances till tomorrow will almost always hurt your credit score today. Luckily, you can live in the financial present and break the habit of procrastinating when it comes to your finances.
Here are 5 tips that should help you send procrastination packing:
- Break it up: Instead of being intimidated by paying off credit card debt while reviewing stacks of bills or a long credit report, break up the task into small manageable parts. For example, if increasing your credit score is on your to-do list, tackle one negative entry on your credit report at a time. It is better to take small consistent steps then to procrastinate and not do anything at all.
- Retrain your brain: Don’t think about your financial plan as a “rainy day fund”. When you are writing a check to pay off your credit card bill on time, think about it as having more disposable income every month.
- Tell your friends: Hold yourself accountable for the financial responsibilities that you need to take care of. Tell your friends on Facebook that you are going to establish a budget or pay down your debt. Not into social networking? Tell your best friend. This way, you will be committed to doing it, as someone else knows you plan to do it.
- Think in terms of tasks, not time: Instead of putting a time limit on your time to pay bills, vow to pay a certain number of bills today. This way, you won’t feel weighed down by the task at hand.
- Reward yourself: When you’ve tackled a financial task head on instead of putting it off. A reward as small as some new songs on iTunes when you balance your checkbook can make a huge difference in your financial success.
If you find yourself going back to your old procrastinating ways, don’t get discouraged. It takes time to change old habits, but once you do, you will be on the road to financial freedom.